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motberg

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  1. great idea! Maybe also discount future activation codes for those of us who screw-up their systems regularly 😉
  2. Thanks for the additional comments... The system where I like to try Euphony will be a single PC to Gustard U16 i2s -> Gustard A20H (AK4497 x 2) I have a native DSD512 classical sampler, and from the brief listening I have done so far think this DSD idea may be something to try for classical. I have also tried the older version of HQPlayer upsampling PCM to DSD256 which sounds promising. I would need to do upsampling for most my files, probably to DSD 256. The Gustard setup is currently seriously popping with DSD though Windows, so I am hoping Euphony maybe can help with that... the AK4497 generally has some nice attributes as implemented in the Gustard DAC, so I really hope I can fix the DSD popping one way or another. I did give Euphony a very brief try a while back and liked the interface and easy installation, but not evaluated the sound. I heard a r2r DAC with Volumio in my system and that offered a nice sound, different, but complementing, my normal Windows Server setup* with JPlay. I should be able to have a chance for my serious Euphony test later this week - so will report back how it goes and if it offers any help with the DSD popping. Big thanks to everyone who posts here. It seems the Euphony developers are considering these comments and testing/implementing various ideas.. It is pretty expensive, but for someone who does not relish the opportunity to become a Linux expert, such a relatively mature product could be considered money well spent (I follow every AL thread here also... have no idea half the time what they are talking about... jejejeje)... All these Euphony posts and comments are greatly appreciated as they can seriously help potential users get the most out of the evaluation period. Quick question, my full library is on an external 4TB USB WD Red HDD drive (LPS, Intona, Matrix H USB card, good USB cables). Almost the entire 4TB is full... would it be better to use another drive for the test, maybe a small internal SSD? I am worried that indexing the entire 4TB may be difficult. Or maybe I can point the Euphony indexing to only a single particular folder? *I have another setup for PCM, with 2 PC WINServer to an Audio-GD 8xPCM1704UK NOS DAC that is just perfect for prog and classic rock .. no need to touch that setup currently.. that (NOS7) DAC is very special and I am feeding it with a M10 clock / U16 via i2s also.. It sounds great with upsampled PCM as well as all native rates. Due to problems I have had with JPlay, I want to try changing this setup to HQPlayer, (server and endpoint)... but if Euphony works well on the Gustard (hopefully DSD) system, then will give it a try on the Audio-GD PCM system also. If I cannot fix the popping of the Gustard stuff, then will change the DSD side back to Audio-GD r2r with Euphony.
  3. Hi, thanks for the comments - are you doing any upsamping with Euphony? I need find time to install the trial and test without having to travel for work during the trial, but want to try mainly for sampling to DSD... I remember some comments that Euphony's own upsampling to DSD was very good, on par with some HQPlayer filters. For this test, I will use my Win10 box using a 25W i5 (10A/19V with HDPlex DC-DC + 10A/12V to CPU), but easy enough for me to upgrade to one of the known power configurations if moderate success with the preliminary setup which is ready to go. (note Win10 is absolutely no comparison to WinServer...I have 2 PC's with Win10 Pro and 2 with server versions, and the server OS is a completely different environment to my experience)
  4. agree, I have at least 6 of the LDOVR boxes, and this adds a nice touch of stability to my DC requirements In my experience, LPS-1 + SR LDOVR box > LPS-1.2
  5. I am using 2 PC setup (Win10 AO to WinServer2019 GUI AO to some USB helper-stuff to DAC), but with JPlay (soon to change to HQPlayer 4). AO is a big improvement, even on the WIN10 control (i7) machine.. the ability to select the digital filter and sound signature settings are mandatory to me. If not for AO, I would use Euphony or Volumio, either of those beat any non-AO Windows for my preferences. Your configuration is much different due to the Rendu NAA, so I think you will need to try.. I suggest try WinServer2019 GUI with AO, make sure to play with the filter and signature settings to see if they have any effect. Hopefully someone with a similar endpoint can offer more concrete advice. I think Server eval version lasts 3 years... so... (I am pretty old... ya never know 😲)
  6. I guess you are thinking about the Pro-Ject Pre Box S2 Digital vs. the M500 which are both in the same price range, much less than 1000 USD. There is a long thread here, directly from users, for great info about the Pro-Ject. This may also be a good thread to see if MQA has sufficient value to you, as it severely limits your selection range. https://audiophilestyle.com/forums/topic/34777-pro-ject-pre-box-s2-digital-mqa-hw-decoding-at-reasonable-cost/ The M500 I think is very new so not much news yet, but here is a review: https://soundnews.net/sources/dacs/smsl-m500-review-mqa-for-the-masses/ For a different type of sound (but no MQA) in the same price range you can check this: http://www.audio-gd.com/R2R/R2R11/R2R11EN.htm Some users over at HF have a thread If you are in the USA, I would certainly consider something from Schiit (again... no MQA) for example https://www.schiit.com/products/jotunheim I am not into headphones much, but it seems matching the cans to the DAC/pre is a very important consideration, so you need study system matching, as well as the type of overall tonality you prefer.
  7. I have been checking alternatives and, while researching the Gustard A20H (also AK4497 x 2) , ran across a user at ASR that tried a D70 and compared directly to the Gustard A20H, his comments regarding the D70 were "The lack of punch was obvious compared to the A20H.." So, as you mentioned, this AK chip is looking promising. I need figure out how to dump the D70 without the SO catching on.. good thing it is dual voltage, makes for a bigger market ...😀
  8. These are 2 excellent related documentaries: The Blues, 2003 series by Martin Scorsese. Jazz, 2001 miniseries by Ken Burns. Both are enlightening and memorable.
  9. Thanks for the gig info... the Jamie's brunch thing sounds perfect... I signed up for the newsletter and will keep checking the schedules. I am from the Allentown area... currently on the other side of the world... but get back often... Regarding the blues - I think exposure to this music's history should be considered for integration into USA high school curriculums.. so much has evolved from its origins and development - and this important part of our culture seems not sufficiently appreciated. Regarding the software study - wow - I think anyone considering these should check that list to save themselves some time.. for sure having a live music reference for comparison helps validate the impressions. Although it has been many years since I was standing aside a Leslie 5 nights a week, I still can use those memories' reference points along with the Fender Precisions, Strat's etc.... very valuable for stereo system analysis. My grandson got his first Fender for his 9th birthday a couple months ago - the granddaughter gets the electric piano for hers the end of this month 😉 I have found that Alexa is great for exposing kids to the joys of (our) music 😎 Hope to see you some Sunday soon!
  10. Thanks for the comments.. For balanced with i2s option, the GUSTARD A20H Dual AK4497 DAC/Pre would perhaps qualify as a value piece. Gustard appears to be building a good reputation in both the DAC and amp sectors. This has an analog class A balanced head/pre amp, so maybe consider the value at 450 for the DAC and 300 for the pre (but save some money and clutter in interconnects and extra power cord) https://shenzhenaudio.com/products/gustard-a20h-dual-ak4497-xmos-usb-pcm-dsd-dop-dac-decoder-and-class-a-full-balanced-amplifier I am waiting to see if any comprehensive, valid, comparative reviews for the new Schiit Bifrost 2 ($699, but includes obvious benefits for USA based customers). I have been following/buying DDC's for a few years and Schiit seem to have previously hit a home run with their Eitr USB/SPDIF convertor, so have built some street-cred in my view for upgrading their USB implementation. They are very confident in their new Unison USB™ card, but seem to have had a couple bumps in the model launch which have already been identified and corrected iiuc... I think USB source isolation has some value (think of all the ISO Regens and Intonas sold), so maybe there is reduced need for USB fixers with this card, again offering extra value. https://www.schiit.com/products/bifrost-1 A single ended option that has been pretty successful is the Audio-GD R2R 11 (2019 Version) Single Ended Discrete Ladder Headphone amp / DAC (DSD native / DXD / PCM) ... 350 USD. It has been out for a couple years now and has had a few revisions so the current version is fairly mature.... there is a HF thread with more info. http://www.audio-gd.com/R2R/R2R11/R2R11EN.htm Also SE, I have a Topping D50 DAC I was using for subs. I gave it a brief listen when I first got it and sounded surprisingly good, but for the power supply I was using a mains-regeneration fed LPS with LDOVR LT3045 5V regulator box and some decent Ghent cables.. I will try to put that back in the system and give a short report... Since I would think some here may have an extra decent 5V LPS lying around, this may be a particularly good bargain.. https://shenzhenaudio.com/products/topping-d50-hifi-audio-dac-es9038q2m-2-xmos-xu208-dsd512-usb-32bit-768khz-dsd512-decoder
  11. This card looks really cool... Have you tried or tested with the SE line outs? I did not see a voltage spec, so was wondering if the line-out quality is on-par with the headphone out (seems to be pretty focused on headphone users, or powered computer monitors). I was thinking a 1M run to a preamp (passive if possible but not necessary), then another 0.5 or 1M to the amp...
  12. Certainly 300+ hours playing time on the D70... D70 dynamics (to me) are similar to what you get when strapping a clean soft-knee compressor across the outputs... I forget the album title, but a couple days ago I tried the song "Themes" from Yes, starts with some synth stuff then an interesting (single notes) piano part.. the lack of dynamics was very very noticeable on the piano part... I am thinking maybe some of the new ES9038Pro implementations may be better in dynamics - I am a little gun-shy about trying another AK in this price range unless some good reviews which address dynamics (pretty important attribute for music imho...). The older dual 9028 versions may be a bargain also if well implemented. I been checking the past few days and agree maybe 700-850 USD FOB is a more realistic minimal target range for something with balanced output and without obvious concessions. For myself, I also value i2s input as i have couple good i2s DDC's..
  13. Thanks, I am using WIN2019 GUI evaluation and replacing the default shell with AS. The problem is that if I am traveling for a couple weeks with the computer shut down, then it seems the OS is losing its evaluation days countdown place and resets to zero.. this is an audio PC, without persistent internet connection. Upon boot, I will start with the AS and notice OS shutdown after a short while of playback. I need revert back to the default GUI shell to check, and there on the bottom right is the notice. So I want to check the countdown status every time upon boot without reverting back to default shell. Is PowerShell command "slmgr -dlv" the easiest and most accurate place to view the countdown status?
  14. I do not think this is true for the current administration.... the current trade battle focus is simply about putting the USA in the most preferential future trading position with China. Presently, I sense a great deal of respect generally between the two administrations and the affected parties within the supply chains (and I have a more advantageous view of this than most...) If they get a good deal, then freight/duty/paperwork will be reduced both ways...
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